What do these dreams mean?

Dear Fortune Cookie, I’m a man who is approaching 30 and in a relationship with a kind, intelligent, funny, and loving woman. We get along well, have similar tastes, and don’t fight. I love her dearly. Recently, I’ve been having dreams that involve cheating on her with former girlfriend or friends with benefits. The sex in dream world is as good as it was with these women in reality, which was off the charts amazing. I’m feeling guilty waking up hot and bothered from someone from my past. Help!

Sometimes a sex dream is just a sex dream.

02-12-13-28-35 / 30

Hello Diner. There has been very little valid research done on dream interpretation, and the general scientific community in this branch of psychology does not put much stock in the literature that’s currently out there. Your dreams most likely have nothing to do with a deep desire to cheat on your partner. In fact, your feeling of guilt is a great thing. Even though you know you have no control over your dreams, you still feel remorseful for having them. And it’s perfectly understandable that you’d be hot and bothered: you’re biologically designed to like sex. There’s nothing to be shameful of, and I see that you’ve done nothing wrong.

You may not have control over your dreams, but you do have control over your choice to be committed to your partner. I also see that you seem fine there. You still care about your partner, and you still see a lot of positives in her. Your message to me wasn’t about how fed up or bored you are of her.

Even fully conscious, abstract concepts and emotions are difficult to grasp. When you think of themes like love, wisdom, or sexuality, you most likely are picturing exemplars of those ideas. Love looks like a family; wisdom looks like a Fortune Cookie. Where dreams are concerned, what your brain processes is more complex. Any psychological or physical factors may have influenced the situations you dreamed about. You may be dealing with stress, or you may be thinking of things that your mind encoded with your former partners or the experience of having good sex. You have had a surge of testosterone in your body. Those dreams may have even come from positive sexual thoughts about your partner. Because of the lack of valid research, it’s hard to tell what brought it on.

If you still get satisfaction from your current relationship then take what happened as nothing more than your brain speaking in its own language of past experiences and images. You may even use your dreams to inspire new bedroom fun with your partner.

If you truly no longer get value out of your relationship, earnestly communicate your needs, or consider going your separate ways. We Fortune Cookies as a rule do not judge our Diners. We are baked delicacies; you are a living, sexual animal. But even as animals, you can choose not to act on your dreams as though they have a specific supernatural meaning. You do not need to feel guilty for being attracted to other people or for having dreams of sex outside of the relationship. Good luck, Diner, but in this case, I think you’re fine without it.